I started a classics book club for myself and my kids. For those who are like me and would like to start one up, but don’t have enough friends who are interested, I joined a few meetup.com groups in my area and posted each book club meeting and started a secret private Facebook group for those who I knew to join in as well. (Ultimately, it became just a Facebook thing. After about six months on meetup, we had about 40 members on the Facebook page, so it ended up starting to just be new people being added by word of mouth or if I met people at homeschooling park days.)
I have a few goals — read classics and hopefully foster some friendships with other homeschooling moms for myself and other homeschooling kids for my daughter.
Here is how I introduced it:
I’m starting a classics book club for ages 4ish-10ish (younger and older certainly welcome). The plan is to read one classic a month and have a party based on the book to celebrate our accomplishment. This is a club for the kids, so the kids should be reading the classic or have the classic read to them. It’s up to you whether it will be an abridged version or not.
Hopefully, we parents will also read the books and have the chance to read some great classics we read as a child or ones we never got to. And, in the process introduce a whole new world to our kids and inspire them to love reading.
Each event will be a little different. Kids can dress up. I’ll plan fun activities and a themed snack. Every other will be in my backyard, which means they’ll probably get messy since it’s all dirt. The other times we will go somewhere else that will enhance the book.
When I say book club, I mean it in its simplest form — reading a book together. 🙂 This is very casual. No formal questions or discussions. Just, getting together to do activities that expand on the book. It’s not necessary to come every time and coming to one party does not mean you have to come every time. So, no need to commit to coming to every one. Come when you can. No pressure!
The Theme for Each Book Club
And in that theme, I try to make each party title related to travel. We also made passports for each child. They get them when they arrive and at each station, they stamp a letter of the “place.” Then they leave it behind for me to keep track of. That way, those who don’t come every time aren’t responsible for remembering it.
Update: I loved this, but soon realized it was an idea that stems from a more structured format than I planned. It would work great in a classroom or as a co-op, but I found that it was a lot of work for me — I kept trying to do enough activities that covered all the stamps — and, half of the kids weren’t interested, including my own! In a classroom, this would be a simple way to keep track of all the kid’s completion and progress. But, in a book club like this, when it isn’t necessary for all kids to do all the activities, nor were they required to do the stamps, it was just busywork. So, I sadly let them go, but hopefully some of you will find a place for them for your classroom or libraries or whatever. 🙂
Feel free to download and print copies for yourself — I add six blank pages.
Passport interior first page
And, I have a donations box out if anyone wants to help with supplies. I thought about making it an activity to pay for, but it seemed a little strange, when I was doing it for my daughter and getting so much from it myself. And, also this way, those who can’t afford it can still come. I’ve gotten enough to cover at least half of the costs each time, which is way more than I expected! Love giving people!
I will try and do a post for each one, but it may take awhile. But, I’ll list the books we read as we go. I’ll also put the Pinterest board I created next to it. (PS: For those of you who are part of this book club — any future books listed are subject to change!! 🙂 ) And, just as a reference, we started the book club when my daughter was 4 1/2 years old, but the activities can work for lots of age groups — the oldest I’ve had doing stuff is an 8th grader, and they had fun too! 🙂
- “Oh, the Places We’ll Go”
Dr. Seuss (Pinterest Board)
- First Stop: China!
Little Pear and Little Pear and Friends (Pinterest Board)
- Destination: Wonderland!
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (Pinterest Board)
- All Aboard!
The Boxcar Children (Pinterest Board)
- Up the Rhine to Switzerland!
The Overall Boys in Switzerland (don’t get the paperback on Amazon, it doesn’t have pictures!)
- Berry Picking
- Creek Exploring
Minn of the Mississippi
- At the Seashore
A Bear Called Paddington
- Farm Fun
Two and Two Are Four
- Homesteading Adventure
- Mystery at My House
Nate the Great
Nate the Great Goes Undercover
Nate the Great and the Lost List
Nate the Great and the Phony Clue
Nate the Great and the Sticky Case
Nate the Great and the Missing Key
Nate the Great and the Snowy Trail
Nate the Great and the Fishy Prize
Nate the Great Stalks Stupidweed
Nate the Great and the Boring Beach Bag
- Play and the Park
- Crazy Fun
Mrs Piggle Wiggle
- Visiting a Farm
- Southern Picnic
- Fun at the Beach
Swiss Family Robinson
- Dinosaurs at the Fair
Magic Tree House: Dinosaurs before Dark #1
- Double Trouble
Lisa and Lottie
- Swedish Kalas!
Happy Times in Noisy Village
- A Play and the Park
Henry and Mudge
- A Morning of Kindness
The Hundred Dresses
- Afternoon Tea
A Little Princess
- Bunny Museum Visit
Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane